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UTEP Football: Final Report Card, Tight Ends/Wide Receivers

Plenty of weapons have emerged, making the future look promising.

High points: Breakout seasons from Jaquan White and Tyler Batson, Cedrick Lang's game winning catch, Hayden Plinke's strong season

Low points: Autrey Golden's injuries, inconsistent play calling, drops

Final Grade: C+

Few bright spots emerged this season on the offensive side, but none brighter than the emergence of tight end Hayden Plinke and UTEP's wide receiver corps as legit offensive weapons going forward.

At the start of the season, this was a young group who had the task of a new quarterback to usher in, and these guys executed well when play calling allowed it, and even won a few games.

Hayden Plinke had a solid year with 410 yards receiving, and a 57.8% catch rate.  Despite not reaching the end-zone in 2015, Plinke became UTEP's third down security blanket, and a legit big play threat.

Cedrick Lang will go down in UTEP history as a legend, with the NMSU overtime grab as the first memory that will come to mind after four years on the basketball floor.  Lang caught 11-passes for 72 yards in his first football season since high school, and also improved his blocking skills.

When you look at the wideouts, the strong season from Jaquan White is promising for the next season.

White led UTEP with 494 yards receiving, and a 63.1% catch rate.  White's seven touchdowns were all in clutch situations, and will be one of UTEP's main targets in the passing game next season.

Tyler Batson also had a strong season, he's the only UTEP wide receiver to have an 100-yard receiving game, averaged 9.3 yards per target.  More targets and routes should be drawn up for the talented Houston native, using his matchup problem size.

Warren Redix was another breakout player whose future looks very promising.

Redix averaged seven yards per catch,with 29 catches, and 43 targets on the season, showing offensive versatility by also playing running back, and returning kicks.

UTEP also had nice contributions from Cole Freytag who had 14 catches for 257 yards, and three touchdowns.  Its safe to say Freytag may have earned him a starting spot next season or at least more targets.

The only negative you can draw is that this group did have their fair share of drops, but like most of the offense, the lack of offensive identity brings the grade to a mediocre mark.  Throw in the fact of injuries and uncertainty at quarterback which also hinders the grade from a chemistry standpoint.

But 2015 was a productive year in terms of growing purposes, now its about increasing production for 2016, while learning a possibly entire new offense come spring practice.

We knew it would be a growing process for the tight ends and wide receivers, but they grew up on the fly, produced, and showed UTEP has some talent to work with for whoever the new offensive coordinator may be.

Key losses: Autrey Golden, Cedrick Lang

Key Returners: Jaquan White, Tyler Batson, Warren Redix, Hayden Plinke, Cole Ford, Cole Rogers, Elliott Oldham, Terry Juniel, Cole Freytag

2016 commits: Eddie Sinegal (signee), Brannon Bullitt, Richie Rodriguez

Individual Receiving Stats

Player Pos. Ht, Wt Year Targets Catches Yards TD Yds/
Catch
Yds/
Target
Catch Rate Target
Rate
Jaquan White WR 5'11, 200 JR 65 41 494 7 12.1 7.6 63.1% 17.7%
Hayden Plinke TE 6'4, 255 JR 64 37 410 0 11.1 6.4 57.8% 17.4%
Warren Redix WR 5'10, 185 FR 43 29 202 1 7.0 4.7 67.4% 11.7%
Tyler Batson WR 6'2, 200 SO 42 21 390 3 18.6 9.3 50.0% 11.4%
Autrey Golden WR 5'11, 180 SR 42 20 165 2 8.3 3.9 47.6% 11.4%
Cole Freytag WR 6'2, 200 JR 31 14 257 3 18.4 8.3 45.2% 8.4%
Jeremiah Laufasa RB 6'0, 225 SR 23 14 130 0 9.3 5.7 60.9% 6.3%
Cedrick Lang TE 6'9, 290 SR 18 11 72 1 6.6 4.0 61.1% 4.9%
Darrin Laufasa FB 6'1, 250 JR 16 10 91 0 9.1 5.7 62.5% 4.3%
Aaron Jones RB 5'10, 205 JR 10 9 106 1 11.8 10.6 90.0% 2.7%
Cole Ford TE 6'4, 245 FR 7 3 13 0 4.3 1.9 42.9% 1.9%
Sloan Spiller FB 6'0, 225 FR 3 2 10 0 5.0 3.3 66.7% 0.8%
Donovan Walker WR 6'0, 180 SO 1 1 5 0 5.0 5.0 100.0% 0.3%
Cole Rogers TE 6'4, 235 SO 1 0 0 0 0.0 0.0 0.0% 0.3%
TK Powell RB 5'11, 190 FR 1 1 -1 0 -1.0 -1.0 100.0% 0.3%

Quarterbacks: C

Defensive Backs: D

Offensive line: B-

Special Teams: B

Linebackers : A